Forum:Huff the File Namespace
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Before you all groan "lol, what the fuck?", I've already read up on the issues surrounding the File namespace and, more importantly, the arguments for keeping it around. I don't intend for this to be another forum where extreme solutions are thrown back and forth. Instead, this is going to be an analysis of what the File namespace is good for, where it fails, and where it adds needless complications to the wiki.
The File namespace has its good points
Take a look at File:Mickey Mouse - Hate haet hat!.png. It totally belongs here - a parody of Mickey Mouse in the style of Mickey Mouse. If that's not Uncyclopedian to you, you haven't looked at Category:AGH MY EYES (or its partner in crime, Category:AGH MY EARS). No, it's not a good actual file, but it also doesn't need to be - it's a goddamn parody.
We have similar articles in the File namespace that I feel belong here, e.g. File:Antipoop.jpg, another reference to an actual visual thingy taken to ridiculous extremes. I'm sure some of you File namespace fanatics can think of more. But these all share one fact in common...
"Files" don't need their own namespace
These aren't "files". You can't have proper "files" on a MediaWiki wiki (more on that later). They are articles that look like the things they're about, which we already have a category for. These "files" could easily exist in mainspace without any complaint. There are few enough of them (that is, properly executed file pages) that they don't need their own namespace, less their own Main Page.
There's been a lot of discussion about how a file ought to be judged, and I'm here to say they ought to be judged as articles. Does a file serve a satirical purpose? Great! It's an article (that looks like the thing it's about). Otherwise, it's VFD fodder, or porn that needs to be kept in userspace. Most files we have now are not funny and/or do not need to be written in the file format. People assume the File namespace is a free pass to upload a file. It's not; an unfunny file is no different than an unfunny article. If we move files to mainspace I think it'll be clearer just how many files are conceptless bunches of text. And furthermore...
Uncyclopedia is not 4chan
Is Uncyclopedia meant for posting and discussion of pictures? No? Then we shouldn't have a file namespace (with a complementary file discussion namespace) that instigates just that.
Specifically, the pages in question stem from - of all things - licenses. Of course, I didn't actually investigate this junk, but it's obvious file pages exist solely because the MediaWiki developers were shitting their pants about copyright. Well, there's also the description bit, but really, if it needs a description it shouldn't be that difficult to write it as a mainspace article that looks like the thing it's about. But the important thing is we don't need file pages that contain no funniness at all.
Think about that for a minute. Most of our file pages don't even contain license information. And the description, if the uploader even bothered to add one, is typically boring, unfunny and/or vandalised. That probably includes a great deal of featured files too. No other namespace - heck, no article - automatically has useless MediaWiki crap added to it. And honestly, if a file isn't in the public domain or unfair use, I'm sure the UN:N license still applies.
At this point you might be wondering what the fuck I'm talking about, but you're probably confused because you've been mixing up files and file pages. That's probably because I've been too lazy to clarify which of the two I meant with "file" in the paragraphs above, which I hope you'll forgive me one day. But to get back to the point, files don't need their own pages. They work just fine without a file page. And the file namespace exists solely to host all the file pages. If we want to look at the files themselves, Media:Filename.jpg will do just fine.
So what do we do?
There aren't any reasons to keep file pages under their own namespace. It confuses things. Because it's its own namespace, we have the impression it ought to be big. And because it's relatively isolated from the rest of the wiki, we (for some reason) imagine that it has different quality rules than everything else. Instead, there are only a few file pages that have a reason to be presented as file pages, just as there are only a few articles that have a reason to be presented as something they aren't. There isn't any need for new quality standards. Something should only be in the file page format if it has a reason to be presented as a file page.
The solution is simple. Kill the namespace, move everything into mainspace, VFD the things that aren't funny - just like everything else. I know everyone might not agree with this, but I haven't seen a single valid argument for keeping the namespace. So please, if there's a good reason to keep it separate, tell me. But all I see are reasons it's harming the wiki and making things more complicated than they ought to be.
The obvious vote that always goes along with these stupid kinds of things
- For MegaPleb • Dexter111344 • Complain here 21:55, April 4, 2011 (UTC)
- Noooooo!! I always use File, never anything else, and have since I got here. All thez people wanting to huff everything they see, must be that radiation effecting the userfolk. Aleister 22:00 4-4-'11